RCS Coming to Messages in iOS 18 for Improved Texts With Android Users

Apple today confirmed that it plans to implement support for Rich Communication Services, or RCS, in iOS 18 this fall. Apple software chief Craig Federighi confirmed ‌RCS‌ support when introducing new features for the iPhone at the WWDC keynote event.

apple rcs thumb
We've known about Apple's plans to adopt ‌RCS‌ since last November, but Apple only gave a vague "later in 2024" timeline for adoption so it was unclear exactly when the feature might roll out. ‌RCS‌ replaces SMS/MMS as the default communication protocol on the ‌iPhone‌.

‌RCS‌ has already been adopted by Google, U.S. smartphone carriers, and other companies, so Apple is a little late to the party. It doesn't change much for iMessage, but it does overhaul the way iPhones interact with Android devices. ‌RCS‌ improves texting with Android users, adding support for features that have previously been limited to iMessage. Some of the additions:

  • Support for higher resolution photos and videos.
  • Support for larger file sizes and file sharing.
  • Audio messages.
  • Cross-platform emoji reactions.
  • Real-time typing indicators.
  • Read receipts.
  • Ability to send messages over cellular or Wi-Fi (SMS is cellular only). There is no cost to send an ‌RCS‌ message over Wi-Fi.
  • Improved group chats.

It is not clear if Apple will introduce ‌RCS‌ support during the ‌iOS 18‌ beta testing period or hold the feature until the fall public launch of the update, but we do know that it is indeed tied to ‌iOS 18‌ at this point.

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Top Rated Comments

FoxBJK Avatar
2 weeks ago

ew no thanks.

RCS is terrible. wish Apple would not support this. bad for consumers.
I'll take RCS over SMS any day!
Score: 46 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Dark_Omen Avatar
2 weeks ago

ew no thanks.

RCS is terrible. wish Apple would not support this. bad for consumers.
Doesn’t negatively effect your life at all, so why do you care?
Score: 43 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Johnny907 Avatar
2 weeks ago

ew no thanks.

RCS is terrible. wish Apple would not support this. it's confusing as hell and locks in consumers to carriers. who thought this was a good idea? terrible protocol ?‍♂️
How does RCS "lock in consumers to carriers?" I have an iPhone on AT&T, my friend has an S24 on T-Mo. Where exactly is the "lock in?"
Score: 28 Votes (Like | Disagree)
uecker87 Avatar
2 weeks ago

ew no thanks. I'm turning this off the moment it's introduced.

RCS is terrible. wish Apple would not support this. it's confusing as hell and locks in consumers to carriers. who thought this was a good idea? terrible protocol ?‍♂️
Tell me you know nothing about RCS without telling me you know nothing about RCS...
Score: 25 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Nimrad Avatar
2 weeks ago

RCS is terrible. wish Apple would not support this. bad for consumers.
What makes it bad for consumers over SMS which is the alternative?
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Cryates Avatar
2 weeks ago
There’s no “learning” RCS. You turn it on and it works. Lol.
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)